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Movies That Make Me Cry

Posted on the 16 August 2012 by Plotdevice39 @PlotDevices

That’s right, I cry.  I mean I have to cry at some point so that people don’t assume I am a robot of some kind and I need to keep up that illusion.  I got to thinking about doing a new article/list and thought that this would be a perfect list to do.  It dawned on me after talking with an old girlfriend about that time she cried after watching the American remake of Godzilla on a date one evening.  I mean, I wanted to cry as well cause that movie was terrible.

So it got me thinking that this would be a fun list to compile, so that I can show chicks that I have a sensitive side.  I mean just because I rock doesn’t mean I am made of stone.  I got feelings and shit, so it’s natural that movies in some way or another will get me tear up like there was dust in this room.

The list does have some caveats.  I excluded historically tragic films cause my god is that depressing and meant to pull at the emotional strings.  I also didn’t include any movie where a dog or cat dies cause I am only human.  With that in mind, in no particular order, I present the ten movies that have made me cry like a kid with a skinned knee.

Also just a warning…spoiler ahead for some of these movies.

Movies That Make Me Cry

October Sky

If you have never seen this movie, I highly recommend tracking this down on Netflix.  A wonderful story about Homer Hickam and his friends adventure in rocket building.  A true story about exploring the human spirit and escaping from an enclosed life by the use of model rocket building inspired by the launch of Sputnik.

What gets me most about the film is the closing scene in which Homer (Jack Gyllenhaal) is about to launch the final rocket of his crew’s endeavors, only to have his father John (Chris Cooper) show up to finally support his sons work that he so staunchly resisted.  It’s a beautiful moment when the father realizes that there is something more to his sons life than staying in the coal mining town.  Homer has achieved something impossible that John didn’t think could happen.  They never saw eye to eye during the entirety of the movie, John wanted Homer to be a miner like himself and never venture outside the town.  This final rocket launch, scored beautifully by Mark Isham, just encapsulates the struggle and bonding that happens at the end.

That 3 minutes clip just about moved me to tears and I am not even through the first film.

The Lord of the Rings – The Return of the King

OK, let’s remember that I am a geek and the fact that I have read the entire trilogy about a dozen times should not surprise anyone.  Every time I get to this part of the book, I get a little misty and the fact that it is now a major motion picture only added to the emotional journey that takes place over the course of three books.  I knew it was coming, I have read that section numerous times and seeing it on film just added that extra push.  It’s was an exhausting journey, one that tasked the smallest of men in Middle Earth and to see them honored in they were is just beautiful.

Big Fish

I have already covered my love for this movie in a previous post, which you can read here, but the ending is what truly got to me.  The whole film is about this disconnect between a father and son.  The tall tales told by the father is not believed by the son causing this rift between knowing what or who the father is really like.  The ending is pure beauty, rolled up into this grande finale of a sendoff with Albert Finney being taken to the river and all the characters of his stories and memories are there to wish him off.  It means a lot more in the end that you are taken in by the grand tales, but that is what defines the relationship and the story. The fathers tales are were his own, something that he made up to distance himself from his son.  But the truly final act of reconciliation is when the son brings together all those stories, all those characters and with his father’s last moments, binds them all together.  The tales are just memories and stories, the act of bringing them together and accepting them is the truly moving part of this film.

Good Will Hunting

So this film has two separate scenes that end up creating a moving moment in the films closing run time.  Of all the things that got me to shed some tears, it’s the fact that I was crying because of Ben fucking Affleck.  I didn’t think it was possible, but the first clip where he explains to Damon about making something of his life and not being stuck in their town is incredibly well delivered line and shows some emotion from Affleck.  The sincerity of the line to Damon is the sort of tough love that he needed throughout the entirety of the film as Damon’s character has been struggling with his own personal demons.  Couple that speech with the closing moments of Will leaving the town for a girl and the crestfallen look on Affleck’s face as his friend did what he wanted him to do match perfectly with Elliott Smith’s Miss Misery song make for an emotional payoff.

Field of Dreams

I previously talked about this film here which covers my love of the father son baseball movie.  It isn’t so much about baseball that gets me to tears, but rather one line delivered perfectly by Costner.  Any guy who has seen this movie has cried to it and if they are lying you call them out on that shit.  I might be robotic in my emotions, but the choked out line that Costner says to his father just hits you right in the heart.  Even hearing that line in my head is getting the water works ready.

Saving Private Ryan

I am going to overlook the fact that this entire movie is based on a flashback that Matt Damon’s character has at the cemetery about his rescue from the perspective of Tom Hanks and his crew of soldiers.  I mean, how does he know all that shit they went through went down the way it did.  Just kind of bugs me a bit here.  Anyways, the final moments at the cemetery is really where the emotional tears come into play with Ryan’s closing remarks to his wife over the grave of Capt. Miller.  “Tell me I have led a good life” and “Tell me I’m a good man” carry so much weight in this film when Ryan wonders if the sacrifice was worth it all.  Not just to him, since he went on to have a full life, but if his life and where he is at now lives up to Millers final words.  The weight of a war and heroic actions can whittle away at the strongest man.

The Iron Giant

Oh god, here it comes, the tears, can’t hold them back.  This is the only time I will say that the actor Vin Diesel has made me cry.  Yes, Vin “Fast and Furious” Diesel is the voice of The Iron Giant, albeit heavily modified and robotic.  The movie just brings on the tears for me as the closing moments of the film are captured with just two lines of dialogue between the boy and his robot.  “You are who you choose to be” is just damn near moving in the context of the film as the robot is made out to be a menace, but his final sacrifice and the low uttering of “…Superman…” just kills me.  Read my original post here.


For a film about cancer, there sure were a lot of laughs.  I reviewed the movie when it came out and commented on the rather upbeat cancer plot.  I appreciated not being hit over the head with depressing moments that seem to be the hallmark of these sort of films, but that doesn’t mean that 50/50 is without it’s sorrowful moments.  Throughout the film, Levitt’s character has tried and tried to beat the cancer, keeping a solid mindset and enjoying life as much as he can, but the weight and reality of his life possibly ending during surgery is just so fucking heartbreaking.  His character never reached out for help during the movie, but when confronted with death, he breaks down and just needs someone, anyone.  That did it for me, that one moment in the hospital that brought a stark reality that people with cancer face.  The notion that death is right there, breaking you down when you least expect it.


10 minutes.  Not even 10 minutes into this movie and Pixar decides to just take out your heart and stomp on it, before nurturing it back to health and then doing it again.  In 10 minutes they manage to show a relationship between two people, cover the entire span of their life, before bringing us to utter tears like blubbering newborns.  In under 10 minutes, Pixar made a better love story than anything else out there and they did by showing us something we can all relate to.  Young love, blossoming and turning into a partnership that spans decades, only to face the troubles of the world around them and a FUCKING MISCARRIAGE!  What the hell man!  I will say, it accomplished what it set out to do and the connection we have for the old man in the film is deeper than what could be accomplished in a 90 minute movie.




Well that’s it.  I mean there are a lot more movies out there that can bring on the tears, but I decided to list off the ones that I can immediately recall.  Honorable Mentions are The Lion King, Bambi, any film about the Holocaust, Forrest Gump, most war movies, Amelie, and any movie where a dog dies.

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